CSC Stage 2 For Young Audiences Receives Grant From Youth in Philanthropy at Foundation for MetroWest

Commonwealth Shakespeare Company's CSC 2 Series for Young Audiences is pleased to announce that it received a grant from the Youth in Philanthropy at Foundation for MetroWest to support its Stage2 production of Romeo & Juliet. CSC2 presents an annual production of Shakespeare's plays for students from over 20 local schools, as well as a Community Performance, taking place this spring from May 23-31 at the Carling-Sorenson Theater at Babson College, 231 Forest Street, Wellesley, MA.

Following each student matinee of Romeo & Juliet there is a short post-show discussion in the theater with members of the cast and led by a representative of the show's artistic team. Students have the opportunity to ask questions of the actors and learn about their process in preparing the show. They also discuss themes from the play, encouraging feedback and reactions about the work from the audience, tying this discussion into their own lives. These talkbacks are offered free of charge directly following each student matinee and are optional for all attendees.

Youth in Philanthropy (YIP) is an experiential leadership development program offered through the Foundation for MetroWest designed to empower and educate local youth to become our community's next generation of philanthropists - those who give their time, talent and treasure for the common good. The inaugural program ran in 1997, and over the past 20 years YIP has grown to become the largest and oldest youth philanthropy education program in the country. To learn more about the Foundation for MetroWest and the other services they provide, please visit www.foundationformetrowest.org or call 508-647-2260.

CSC2 is a young company of actors that works with Commonwealth Shakespeare Company on an extended basis. The ensemble is built of twelve, non-equity, early-career actors with some professional experience. CSC2 actors work both as a cohort, learning from a diverse cast of their peers, alongside CSC's professional company in a variety of productions. CSC Academy faculty will also occasionally work with CSC2 to help brush up on fundamentals and extend the learning from the rehearsal room. Rehearsals for all CSC2 work takes place at Babson College in Wellesley, MA.CSC's Stage2 Series provides the opportunity for students and their teachers to attend high-quality live theater created with them in mind. These productions use Shakespeare's original text and are performed by the CSC2 Company. Previous productions include , Macbeth, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Julius Caesar. CSC Stage2 productions are primarily presented for school groups, and will be seen by over two thousand middle school students from over twenty schools in cities and towns that include Belmont, Beverly, Boston, Dedham, Franklin, Hanover, Jamaica Plain, Lawrence, Lynn, Natick, Needham, Reading, Wayland, Wellesley, and West Roxbury.

Commonwealth Shakespeare Company (CSC), best known for its annual free performances on Boston Common, is a non-profit theater company founded in 1996, dedicated to artistic excellence, accessibility, and education. CSC's Free Shakespeare on the Common has served over one million audience members over its 24-year history and has become a beloved summer tradition enjoyed by nearly 50,000 people annually, including this summer's highly acclaimed production of Richard III. In January 2019, CSC partnered with Google to produce an adaption of Hamlet filmed in Virtual Reality entitled Hamlet 360: Thy Father's Spirit, which is currently available for viewing on Boston public media producer WGBH's YouTube page. In 2013, CSC became the Theatre-in-Residence at Babson College in Wellesley, MA. In addition to the annual Boston Common production, CSC now presents fully staged productions at the Sorenson Center for the Arts at Babson, including the recent world premiere of Our American Hamlet, Beckett in Brief, Death and the Maiden, and Old Money; "Theatre in the Rough," semi- staged readings including Fear and Misery in the Third Reich featuring Tony Shalhoub and Brooke Adams; as well as presentations of "Shakespeare & the Law," and "Shakespeare & Leadership." CSC fulfills its educational mission with actor-training programs for pre-professional and professional actors through the summer Apprentice program and CSC2. To learn more about these programs, visit www.commshakes.org.

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